The first time
their school had safe sanitation and plenty of learning materials


Nine-year-old Vanny loves to learn. However, she would often miss school due to being sick. That was because her school did not have adequate clean water. Students could only use a small container to wash their hands, and would even get red rashes from not washing their hands properly.

The lack of water was not their only challenge. Like many schools in Cambodia, Vanny’s school did not have enough stationery and books for all students. The school’s facilities were also run down and insufficient.

“That meant our students couldn’t develop good reading habits, so it affected their reading and learning,“ says Loeung Bunly, the school director.

That changed when World Vision partnered with the school to tackle their challenges – including equipping the school for learning. Several classroom buildings were constructed and the library was renovated and stocked with a collection of new books to read, as well as educational games and posters. Moreover, teachers received professional development training, learning new techniques and best practices to support children to learn.

With the support from child sponsors, the school’s water shortage problem was solved with a new water reservoir, a water tank and handwashing facilities installed on the school grounds. Now they have enough water for toilets, handwashing and the gardens. Students have also been supplied with hygiene kits packed with soap and other essentials and taught good handwashing techniques.

Now Vanny and her schoolmates have learned what a difference washing hands can make. For the first time, they are free to learn and play without worrying about getting sick and missing days of school.

Vanny now rarely skips a day. She knows that her education is key to her future.

“I want to keep studying and get a degree. I want to become a teacher so other children can be well educated like me,” she shares with a big smile on her face.

Your partnership can bring an unforgettable first-time experience to children in poverty like Vanny, as well as transforming a community in the long run to fix the root causes of poverty for children. This New Year, what will you do for the first time?

The Memorable First-times Of Child Sponsors

“I won’t forget the first time I went to Cambodia to visit my first sponsored girl. As I was getting off the car in the village where she lived, I could hear her calling my name! I was really moved and I hugged her immediately.

That was the first time I realised how impoverished her living environment was. Inside her hut there was only a small dim lamp hanging in the middle.

We also enjoyed lunch prepared by my sponsored child for the first time. Although it was a simple meal, I was really satisfied and touched.

The first time I received the sponsorship closure letter, I cried and was heartbroken at the idea of having to part, because we had connected so closely by writing letters to each other for years. It felt as if my own daughter was about to get married, and that she would no longer be with me…”

A sponsor for over 10 years,
currently sponsoring 4 children

World Vision Hong Kong, incorporated with limited liability, is a Christian humanitarian organisation working to create lasting change in the lives of children, families and communities living in poverty.
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